Accenture and fungibility

It is always a pleasure to come across an unfamiliar word amongst the usual sea of familiarity in marketing literature. In the current issue of The Economist, management consulting giant Accenture has paid to have a “special excerpt” included from Outlook, its “journal of high performance business”.

Standing out amongst the usual suspect words like “leveraging” and “groundbreaking” was the phrase “fungible commodities.” Or rather, that people should not be viewed as “fungible commodities.”

I confess, I didn’t actually know what this meant. So I went and looked it up.

Would seem fungiblity “is the property of a good or a commodity whose individual units are capable of mutual substitution.”

Not entirely if Accenture’s argument about the non-fungibility of personnel actually works. But at least I learned something. Which is always nice in marketing.


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